Chuuk High School Vice Principal Resignation

To whom it may concern:

The intent of this letter is issue my formal resignation of employment from the Chuuk State School System, effective June 19, 2017— But, my hope for this letter is that it ignites a passion amongst my Chuukese friends, both in Chuuk and outside of Chuuk, to stand up and fight for yourselves and your children to have access to a great education.

I have been working in Chuuk since 2013, and for the last 2 years, I have been Vice Principal at Chuuk High School. I am not resigning because of my salary or because of the intense heat or because the slow internet. I am leaving because the Chuuk Department of Education is actively stopping the education of children. The Department that is supposed to support schools is stripping schools of resources, corrupting the use of funds, “losing” paper work, and actively pushing out individuals who desire to see Chuukese children get an education.

I have watched the “reform” of Chuuk Education for 4 years now, and I can honestly say that education as a whole is worse now than it was 4 years ago. Millions upon millions of dollars have been dedicated to “fixing” the education system, but in reality, those dollars have mostly been used to buy favors for the “political elite” and Chuuk State Department of Education employees at the cost of Chuuk’s children.

The idea that money is being misused is known by almost all Chuukese, but I am not sure that all Chuukese know the scale to which it is happening, and what it means for their children’s future. I want to be very clear that there is plenty of money available to fund an amazing education system in Chuuk (there is plenty of money for new schools, teachers’ raises, supplies, and training), but the truth is almost none of the money is actually spent in a real way to improve the system.

My experience as an administrator at Chuuk High School showed me that the root of the corruption, and the major factor opposing Chuuk’s children receiving a great education is the Chuuk Department of Education (CDOE) and the Chuuk State Board of Education.

CDOE has not provided contractually obligated raises to teachers, but they give themselves raises. They are not fixing the toilets at elementary schools, but they are renovating their air conditioned offices. They are not providing real, applicable training for teachers and principals, but they take almost weekly trips to the other states. They will not approve funds for Chuuk High School to repair their school buses, but they buy themselves $25,000 cars, and give their previous government vehicles to their relatives. They will not provide proper funding for electricity to Chuuk High School, but they are never without power in their offices. They do not pay leave when it is properly submitted, but they take weeks off at a time with zero consequence. Most students do not have a chair to sit in, but the CDOE has brand new furniture. Schools are left without electricity, technology, or supplies of any kind, but the department has countless computers, printers, toner, ink, pens, paper and resources.

The Chuuk State Board of Education, the group responsible for overseeing the CDOE is a travesty. Administrators, teachers, and myself have begged for their assistance, but they have done nothing. They are the largest disappointment and ultimately responsible for the terrible system. They talk big, but never take action. By never taking action, they are collaborating with the easily visible corruption occurring. Several of the board members say they know about the corruption within the CDOE, but they do nothing. They know schools are not receiving necessary funding for supplies and needs, but they do nothing. They know that employees at the CDOE are depriving the children of an education, but they do nothing.

For 2 years, I have fought for the education of your children. I have fought harder for them than I have ever fought for anything in my life, but I have learned I am unable to change the system as an outsider. I have learned that in order for Chuukese to get a great education, it is the Chuukese parents that must stand up and say it is time to end the corruption. It is time for you to tell the system to stop making excuses—make change.

I wish to end this letter by acknowledging the teachers, staff members, and Principal, Jason Reigon, of Chuuk High School.

Chuuk High School is one of the only true beacons of hope for Chuuk Education, and I have had the pleasure of working with an amazing staff. The teachers, faculty, and administrators of Chuuk High School actually care about the children of Chuuk, and they try every day through whatever means available to help your children.

To each of you, thank you for fighting every day for the children of Chuuk. I will miss all of you and pray for you daily to stay strong in the battles ahead.


Andrew Shelton
Vice Principal, Chuuk High School



  • We will miss you too Mr. Andrew
  • And the corruption goes on and on and on......without any consequences....while the students get cheated.
  • edited June 2017
  • edited June 2017
  • Very sad situations. What would be the appropriate way of dealing with this? Can an investigation launch for this or is it not necessary in Chuuk? What is the role of the investigator when it come to the use of public funds and property?
  • voted for change yet same bullshit.
  • Actually there can never be change with the current administration...
    And yet we still vote for them.
    Epwene Tipisin Io?
  • Andrew, why now that you already left the system? Why didn't you do it when you were a part of it? Kinisorry but this is effort in futile.
  • Kinen, I don't know who you are, but everyone that knew me in Chuuk, knew that I was constantly fighting to make the Chuuk Education System better and fighting for Chuuk High School at almost every level, and I was very vocal while doing it. This letter is not an "effort." It is my hope. My desire is to see Chuukese students have a great education.
  • I'm not as familiar with the Chuuk DOE as I am with the Pohnpei DOE, but I do know that there are a number of challenges facing children there--some of which are self-inflicted.

    Mr Shelton, you may be interested in learning that Pohnpei DOE is undergoing some genuine attempts to transform itself. Assuming our own Board of Education approves of our restructuring plan (which they met to discuss today), you may wish to give our Director, Mr Churchill Edward, a call. 320-2103 is the number for Pohnpei DOE.
  • Thank you Mr. Andrew, first time I encounter your desire therefore I take it as first of its kind.
  • Mr. Andrew, I may not know you but I understand your frustration well enough. So, if I may ask you a question, what do you suggest that Chuuk State may do to correct the problem. If you would identify the main source of the problem what position in the department is the primary source of the wrong doing?
  • Dear Mr. Shelter, I commend you on your directness and your candor in highlighting these issues concerning such disappointing ethics we continue to see utilized by people abusing their positions of power.

    Unfortunately, this is a widespread disease and without the support of the Press to basically highlight these issues to the public, people will continue to be ignorant of the situation.

    I applaude you and wish you well on your next journey.
  • Thank you Mr. Shelton for your sacrifice. The leaders of Chuuk State are nothing but thugs siphoning millions of $$$ out of the mouths of our children. There's virtually nothing that can be done to change the status quo. The greed is inconceivable!! The only way to expose those greedy bastards is by convincing the Trump administration and all U.S allies to cut off funding to the FSM Compact. My family and I are struggling to make ends meet here in the states, and I'll be damned if a single penny of my hard-earned tax dollars goes into the pockets of those corrupt con artists!! To get to them, one has to go to the roots and cut off their life support system!! That would be the end of them all!!
  • When funds are being misused to buy political favors from uninformed contituents, we need to stand up and expose such behaviors!!!
  • In my opinion there can never be change unless You and I stop with our complaints and do something about it. Lets not play the blame blame blame game, We should stop voting in Our Nouwis who are corrupt so we can rid our society of the so call corruption that everyone seems to notice but fail to do something about it. It is what it is and nothing more.

    The root of all corruption lies with us the voters, We seem to know but we don't want to take action on it. Again what are we to do if we are not going to change our way out of our current chuuk system. It is sad but we must all do what we can to help our children get the best education that they deserve.

    Again We all will live with the way the current administration operates, Some of us may not like it but we just have to make do with what we have for another 4 years.

    Let's stop the blaming game it is not our Nouwis who are corrupt it's Us the voters that demand such from the corrupt Nouwis.

    It's KE PACH KE TENTO in the making. And I ain't PACH but am struggling to make do with what life has for me.
  • The saying "kuta itomw" is what comes to mind while reading your thread Mr. Shelton. I must say, for the lengthy 5 years you have stayed on our island, I have not once heard your name come out of the mouths of the many cousins, cousins-cousins or children in my neighborhood when they gather in our family uut and "apworousaa" what they enjoy most or which teacher is the brightest, smartest and most concerned over at Chuuk High School. They mentioned a few non-Chuukese teachers/staff but I am most certain YOU were not one of them.

    While you publicly announce your resignation at Chuuk High School via Micsem, please do keep in mind that you are holding up your termination process for the Department of Education to find someone to fill in the shoes you tried on.

    It's become a contagious disease for majority of 'outsiders'-(please do excuse the labeling, I am trying my best to consider you a brother) to step in our homeland and expect us to handle matters 'the right way'. What is the right way? If you were given the opportunity to single-handedly fix the core of what you believe is the problem, you'd probably give up half-way, just as you are doing. Change is inevitable. We don't expect you to understand, you weren't given the mindset of an islander and running back and forth in your shorts and casual t-shirts with your flip-flops certainly does not cut short for it either. I'm pretty sure as an administrator at Chuuk High, you've probably faced other troubles with the staff or students, but since they are your only friends ( I asked around hehe), your only option was to point your finger to the people putting in some effort in change. You may not like the slow progress but do remember that they are trying to untangle the mess created before them.

    Thank you for your somewhat effort and for provoking the many citizens of our beloved Chuuk to actually be concerned about this issue. Lets see now how many of them are actually willing to come home and make a difference.

  • Pawnstar would call this a bombshell report. But then again, he has no interest on what's happening here and how we may be able to address issues of this nature.
  • Why are we criticizing and cursing at Mr. Shelton? Did he not mention at least something worth considering? I believe some of the things he said are nothing but the truth. The hardest part for us, Chuukese, is that we lack the courage to accept our mistakes. We keep on making excuses so we can get away with our wrongdoings. As long as we always come up with excuses for our wrongdoings, we will never see any positive changes. Changes will never happen if not a thing is done to correct our errors. I am truly convinced myself that CDOE is indeed corrupted and CBOE is fully aware of it. And definitely like Mr. Shelton mentioned, they do not a thang about it! CDOE needs to remove the corrupted chiefs who are the main sources of this corruption. But who is willing to do it? Who is willing to point a gun at the head of the kepina?
  • Pwe ia ei sipwe seikano ia kei osukosuk? Pwata sipwe chok witi fansoun utut ach sisap chiwen uti kana nouwias? Ese wor mettoch epwe mutir seni ach sipwe witi utut?
  • Thank you Andrew Sheldon for what you've done to Chuuk High school during the years you were there. I know CHS has shown great improvement during that time mainly because of you and others who care so much about the students.

    Like Noname said, "Truth hurts!"

  • If we just step back a bit and thoroughly look into the way the current status of the education system operates and how it is being handled, we should be able to, without doubt, realize the reason for drastic decline in the students' ranks in all of Micronesia as well as the results of diagnostic testing conducted. Without denying, students had a greater rate of achievement then than now. I am not saying Mr. Shelton is correct or true in what he is telling everyone. It's just something that we must look into and ask WHY?

    Starting from the dilapidated school buildings to outdated teaching/learning materials; unqualified/non-dedicated teachers to lack of community involvement; careless parents to non motivated students. All these contribute to the failure of the Public School System.

  • Why are private schools students more productive and successful than public school students, IN GENERAL?
  • Let's not keep playing defensive and start realizing and accepting the TRUTH!

    Sakasaka and Kinen, come back home and brew some REAL COFFEE. I am beginning to get shaky from these INSTANT ones. Not good for the HEART.
  • All of the above are practically true Atefon sinbad. Collective desires and efforts by all concerned entities must be exercised in order to advance those desires​ and efforts. No one entity will succeed.
    Thanks for the invitation but I have lived my usefulness.
    I may not tolerate the millennials challenging or abusing my clumsiness.
  • aaaah! (sigh).....Woweeeeeee! Iwe mwanna i sia pe. I am here neparapar fengen me ei ochouw chon overhead.
  • Let's start with the teachers first. Good teachers will result in good education for the kids. How is the current Principal of CHS doing as far as administering and supervision of the teachers comparing to the past Principal? It is a known fact that good teachers and a strong and qualified Principal result in good student's achievements.
  • I don't think it has to do with students per se. Chuukese culture is morally corrupt when it comes to education. Unlike Pohnpei and Kosrae who see kids as kids who need an education, Chuukese egalitarian and strong man way of life won't allow it. So sorry for this guy. Chuukese after the Compact are less ambitious. Chuukese before the Compact are very smart but impractical sometime a strongman culture, they will rally people even if they are wrong. Strongman olitic is Chuuk weakness. Thinking not pointing fingers. Pohnpei's weakness is their god-given-rights not to accept Kapingamarangi as human. Yap caste- system is flawed making them know-it-all in today's society lol.
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